Cousins understand things the way only family can. I’ve been blessed with a ton of cousins and even though we only see each other once or twice a year usually, we make the most of that time, and have stories that we will forever laugh about.
We all have at least 1 wacky parent that are all siblings to each other and another wacky parent that married into the fray. All the aunts and uncles, our moms and dads, come together in this perfect family blend. We joke about how much one side of the family likes to talk, likes to shop, is completely indecisive and always says ‘like I said’ about 17 times in a conversation. And we also know we will probably become them as we grow up if we aren’t there already. There’s also jokes about how the people who married into the family are ‘saints’ for putting up with the nuances. We all tease each other, especially our parents, but we also wouldn’t have it any other way.
We have that bond of all adoring our grandmother who was one of the most amazing people to grace this earth. Her strength, love, kindness and devotion were never ending. We know about the perfectly blackened breaded drumsticks, the apple streusel that no one got the recipe to, the fried spaghetti, and the plum dumplings with breadcrumbs. We know how she could sew absolutely anything. Only we understand just how fantastic a woman she was and only we can feel just how much she is missed every day.
Our family is also known for being loud as hell. I mean, when my grandma was alive, we all used to cram into her small townhome to have Christmas dinner so naturally things would be loud in such a small space. But I’m really just making excuses, because even though we’re in bigger spaces now, we still leave our get-togethers hard of hearing from going partially deaf over a whole night together. If you have a voice at the end of the night, you have not participated enough!
We can be ourselves around each other, for good or bad, no matter what. And if you don’t like, it take a hike. Right cousins?
We also have so much fun together. Most of us like to drink and let loose and we love to laugh. We play games until all hours of the morning. We play Apples to Apples, Cards Against Humanity, The Game of Things and whatever else is available. With these games we come up with the most ridiculous, obscene, and entirely inappropriate inside jokes that will become the theme of the night and leave us with tears and sore stomachs from laughing.
Mysterious Island anyone?
We also understand that we can’t play anything where there could be debates over the answers because some of the uncles get super competitive and arguing ensues. It’s also understood that none of us have the patience to listen to the rules of a game, yet we try to read and understand them, then end up saying ‘well, let’s just play and see what happens’, EVERY time.
It’s understood that spending the night is always an option.
We always do a potluck where everyone brings a dish, and they’re all amazing. Everything is crammed on the counters and we all line up like cattle and take our turns filling our plates. It’s been like that since I can remember. We also know we’re going to fight over who gets the last brownie and that you should secure yours early before they run out.
As the group of us cousins get older, more of us are getting married and these spouses could not be a more perfect fit. But us cousins also know that we had to and have to warn someone we are dating about the family prior to inviting them to a family function. Luckily, those significant others didn’t run away, and the family approved of them. As we continue to pair off and eventually have kids of our own I hope the tradition we carry now in our family continues.
I can’t wait to see what these family gatherings will look like even 10 years from now.
This post is dedicated to my fabulous cousins + spouses, aunts, uncles, parents, siblings and husband. You guys mean more to me than you know, and I cherish our time together.